CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The state Higher Education Policy Commission will roll out an informational campaign on college and university campuses encouraging students to graduate within four years.

Higher Education Chancellor Dr. Paul Hill said the “15 to Finish” campaign will encourage students to take at last 15 credit hours every semester in order to graduate on time.

“The sooner you get through college, you complete in a timely manner, the sooner you can get into the workforce, the less money perhaps you have to borrow in student loans, the less tuition you have to pay for additional semesters,” Hill said. “So it makes a lot of sense.”

The chancellor cited a misconception that students only need 12 credit hours per semester—the minimum to be categorized as a full-time student—to graduate in four years.

Students are sometimes counseled, especially amid academic struggles, to take just 12 hours to remain full-time.

“We think that is sending the wrong message and, in fact, the research indicates that students academically perform better (with at least 15 hours),” Hill said. “That’s the silver lining here.”

The HEPC plans to launch the multi-platform campaign across various campuses during the fall semester.

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  • Maynard

    Wonder what would happen if the state funds that our universities and colleges receive would be withheld and reallocated based on college completion rates.

    In other words, allocate state funds to universities and colleges on a per pupil completion schedule.

  • Wirerowe

    It is a pr campaign to shift the blame from where it truly lies ,the leaders of our state college and universities.

  • Aaron

    The quickest way to "finish" in a timely manner is to simply eliminate some of the "electives" that are essentially requirements that do little besides lengthen the time and cost needed to complete a degree. I've heard all the arguments about providing a "quality liberal arts education" and while that may have held true decades ago, in today's technological world in which information is available at ones fingertips the need provide a "rounded" education versus what is needed for a major should take a back seat to other variables.

    That of course is my humble opinion.

    • Daphne

      It's not right when college personnel who ar in charge of registering students actually adds electives onto students' schedules that are not required for completion of specific degrees.

      No doubt, the college is striving to make money through this process.

    • Wirerowe

      I agree Aaron I also find it a little disingenuous that Paul Hill is putting the responsibility on the students. It is the colleges who are churning these students into long term stays with abysmal graduation rates at some of the state colleges. The onus is on the colleges and Hepc and not the students to increase and speed up graduation rates and maintain standards rather than focus on enrollment.